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In-band Computer Data Collection with Component installed on Storage Subsystem

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000206902D
Publication Date: 2011-May-13
Document File: 2 page(s) / 38K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Storage Resource Management (SRM) applications often need to collect information from the computers connected to the shared storage infrastructure in the Storage Area Network (SAN) in order to present and process all necessary details. One of the problems arising with this situation is the need to establish a communication path between the SRM application and the computers, for example to manage access credentials (which change over time) or network connectivity. One possible solution is an in-band computer data collection on servers initiated from a component that is installed on a storage subsystem. With the fabric's zoning configuration the storage subsystem knows all target WWPN's of the servers that have volumes attached, and therefore, the servers' HBAs can be used to run the data collection. The data collection component on the server-side can be embedded into the HBA Driver Package or the Multipath I/O (MPIO) Driver Package. With this approach no additional software such as host agents need to be installed on the servers and no additional management of the communication path is needed.

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In-band Computer Data Collection with Component installed on Storage Subsystem

Customers with SAN often have the problem that they don't have access rights for servers that have volumes attached from storage subsystems. A reason could be that these servers are being administered by another division or company. This has the consequence that the customer cannot install agents from a storage management system on those servers to collect system information, i.e. server manufacturer and S/N, processor type, attached devices, mounted file systems, OS, etc. But this information is important for the customer to have a complete overview of the SAN.

The main idea of this article is that the computer data collection is initiated from a component that is installed on a storage subsystem and not initiated from a storage resource management system which is the traditional approach. With this new approach the component on the storage subsystem can be seen as a Data Collection HUB.

Because of the fabric's zoning configuration the storage subsystem knows all target WWPN's of the servers that have volumes attached. Therefore, neither IP connectivity nor user/password must be known or maintained.

This idea installs the component Data Collection HUB on the storage subsystem and lets it perform an in-band computer data collection on the server-side to retrieve at least basic system information. Since the storage subsystem knows the target WWPN's of the servers that have volumes atta...